Books

Showcased books by Dr. Van Rheenen.

Changing Face of World Missions, The: Engaging Contemporary Issues and Trends

How does the church communicate God’s unchanging message in an ever-changing world? Missions: Biblical Foundations and Contemporary Strategies gives answers by communicating modes, models, and motives of incarnational missions. It provides theological and strategic foundations for the missionary today and tomorrow. But Missions is far more than blackboard theory. Written by a long-time missionary and missionary professor, it carries the conviction and insights of one who has lived his subject. Van Rheenen’s true-lift examples—sometimes poignant, sometimes humorous—shed a fascinating, personal light on the missionary cycle, cross-cultural issues, church maturation, selection mission fields, and other topics. This distinctive book proves answers and provokes questions. Stimulating, comprehensive, and highly readable, it will enage reders on every level—spiritual, intellectual, and personal.
In this book Van Rheenen presents a comparative analysis of western dualistic secular culture and its worldview with the dynamic integrated worldview of what are often referred to as “traditional” or “animistic” peoples. He explains the characteristics of an “animistic” understanding of the world in such a way as to clarify how characteristics of this worldview are found in various cultures, not just “traditional” ones. This book can also be purchased HERE.
Written to encourage and guide Churches of Christ to become missionary fellowships, the book is both descriptive and prescriptive. It reports the current status of missions among Churches of Christ and personal interviews of 80 mission leaders and missions ministries. It also describes theological and strategic guidelines to encourage and guide local churches toward effective missions involvement. Stories of effective missions churches enable the reader to understand the nature and character of redemptive churches.
Culture’s influence upon Christianity is easier to discern in retrospect than in prospect. If history is our guide, one thing is sure: This age will be as syncretistic as any other…How is the gospel being contextualized in the contemporary world? To what degree are these new contextualizations syncretistic? This book attempts to answer these questions by defining and analyzing contextualization and syncretism.
Although the church growth movement has made a significant impact on evangelicals over the past half century, it has also created controversy and division. This careful five-view analysis helps evangelicals understand the movement’s strengths and weaknesses and arrive at their own conclusions on issues that affect the future direction of the church.
The dramatic changes that have taken place both in global society and in the church have implications for how the church does missions in the twenty-first century. These trends include the rise of postmodernism, the spiritual decline in the West and the advance of the gospel in the rest of the world, and the impact of technology on society and missions. The Changing Face of World Missions is for the mission-minded church leader or lay person who wants to understand these trends. Each chapter identifies and evaluates a trend, examines it in light of Scripture, and proposes a practical response. Important terms are defined, and sidebars help readers think through the issues on their own.Co-authored by Dr. Michael Pocock & Dr. Van Rheenen
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